Taxpayers in Auburn are about to get fleeced out of at least $342,000 and most of them won’t know a thing about it until it is all over.

Most people in Auburn use the Troy Street parking lot as the overflow parking lot when they go to the Auburn Public Library. People who cannot find a parking space, or their one-hour or two-hour parking time is up (and don’t want to get a $10 parking ticket), go over the railroad tracks and park in the Troy Street lot.

The new city manager, the city councilors and the Planning Board members have signed a sales agreement to sell that Troy Street parking lot to a developer from Portland for $45,000 to build a $9,100,000, 53-unit apartment building. The developer told them that $45,000 was all that parking lot was worth. Evidently, everyone believed the developer, even though the City Assessor has it assessed at $387,000.

The city administration had a legal obligation to offer that property to the abutters first, but they overlooked that little technicality.

When the developer builds his $9,100,000 apartment building on that lot, all library users and abutters lose their right to park on that property. That is incredibly wrong to toss everyone off the property when the developer had at least 40 other lots in the city that he could have gone into.

Robert Spencer, Auburn

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